Shoulder pain and mobility deficits: Adhesive Capsulitis
Adhesive capsulitis (a “frozen shoulder”) is characterized by a gradual onset of complaints, and subsequently progressive pain and limitations in ROM, particularly towards external rotation in 0 degrees of abduction. Mobility deficits can persist even after 12 to 18 months, although patients do not report any disabilities. Individuals suffering from diabetes or thyroid disease are at increased risk of developing a frozen shoulder, as are patients ranging from 40 to 65 years of age, women and those who have had earlier episodes.
When assessing outcomes, the DASH, the ASES and the SPADI are recommended – on top of that, an individual’s limitations in activities and physical impairments should be documented. Patient education concerning the course of the disorder and possible activity modifications and exercises to minimize irritation and increase functional ROM is a cornerstone of the treatment. Intra-articular corticosteroid injections may provide short term pain relief and improved function, but always in combination with exercises to increase shoulder mobility and, if necessary, joint mobilization procedures performed by a therapist. > From: Kelley et al., J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 43 (2013) A1-A31. All rights reserved to the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy.
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